The Sports Gene
Smore by Dani Patrick
Do you fit this?
In Sports there is much more components then just innate ability, talent, and talent of train-ability. The Sports Gene By David Epstein gives clear representations of this and examples. With sports you must not be average physically, must see into the future, and must have proportions differing from each field.
Now we have some serious competition in sports, everyone knows this, but I'll just show some statistics so you get a full grasp in a common sport many people strive to make it in
Take a Look
In the NFL for every extra centimeter or 6.5 pounds gives you on average an extra $45,000 annual income. The competition is tough, even by a centimeter. Every centimeter counts... literally. You can be cut by the NFL or any elite pro sport for that matter for being an inch to short, a centimeter too short, or if you fit the Vitruvian Man. Your twin brother can make it and you be cut just by your physique. How would you feel when something basically out of your control held you back?
NBA Vitruvian Man
For the NBA their arms are significantly longer than the average male man. As shown here their arms outstretch the "perfect man." Perfection for this sport, is different than perfection of the average man. Perfection for the NBA require lengthier arms, and taller height.
Now Evolution of Sport Built Body Types
In 1925 shot putters and high jumpers were the same weight. Now if we look at them side by side there is a noticeable average and difference between the two. Over those decades since 1925 shot putters are on average are 130 pound heavier than high jumpers. How this plays into evolution is shot putters need to put more weight on to support the force of the shot put into the air. High jumpers generally have a more lean body shape for the jump over the bar.
Not just a Conspiracy
This whole "sports gene" and evolution Is not just a conspiracy. Sports physiologist say that sports skills and the body types for each individual sport are changing faster than evolution itself. So is it just the body type that makes people more innate? After all, people in the elite and pro sports have more physically similar statures than siblings with the same set of parents
Not only evolving thier stature, but also their vision
Baseball players have been evolving to change their perception of the ball. It takes a major league baseball player’s hand 400 milliseconds from pitchers hand to the plate. It takes about 150 milliseconds to execute a blink when direct light is shined into our faces. When a MLB fastball is thrown it travels in around 10 feet in just 75 milliseconds that it takes sensory cells in retina to confirm a baseball is in view. With this it's almost virtually impossible to "keep your eye on the ball" making baseball players see into the future. They must predict where the ball is going instead of necessarily where it is in it's current time.
MLB's Fastest Pitch Ever Recorded
Although this isn't the average, its just an idea of how quick it passes by
"MLB's Fastest Pitch Ever Recorded." YouTube. YouTube, n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2015.
All in All
It's not just one sport or involvement that is changing, it is many and the comparisons are noticeable.
Is the author of The Sports Gene. He has a master's degree in Environmental Science and was an award-winning senior writer for Sport Illustrated where he uncovers sports science, medicine, and Olympic Sport. To hear more about him you can see his TEDTalk on his New York Times Best Seller of the Sports Gene